Mr Adang Daniel, National Coordinator, Project iRead, an NGO, has attributed the failure of basic education in Nigeria to wrong method of recruiting teachers.
Daniel expressed the view in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) inn Abuja on Thursday.
He said students with the least grades in the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination were sent to colleges of education while those with high scores attended universities and polytechnics.
Daniel said colleges of education were supposed to train teachers, who would raise those who would excel in Joint Admission and Matriculations Board Examination (JAMB) examinations.
“Recruitment of teachers for basic education is wrong, whereby when you have a high score in JAMB you go to the university.
“If you have the next high score you go to polytechnic and when you fail in these two places you go to college of education.
“And these colleges of education are where teachers are supposed to be trained to bring up these people that are supposed to score high in JAMB,’’ he said.
Daniel said another problem with basic education in the country was the use of a wrong model.
He said the system of education in Nigeria was not responsive to national needs.
Daniel said that, for example, while the country had challenges in the energy, it had no centre that trained people in solar energy production.
He said the country relied on Japan and China for the importation of solar panels.
Daniel also criticised the management structure of schools, saying that rather than states manage public schools, communities should manage them.
He said such arrangement should allow communities to influence and encourage their members to attend school.
Meanwhile, Some stakeholders have called for a change in the law which leaves the management of primary schools with local governments.
They called for the transfer of the responsibility to states or the Federal Government.
Mr Bulama Abiso, the Chairman of NUT in Bornom urged the National Assembly to remove primary education from the jurisdiction of local governments.
“The idea of allowing the local government councils to handle the Basic Education sector should be discarded.
“Most councils cannot even pay their workers the mandatory minimum wage due to dwindling resources, talk less of paying teachers regular salaries, and allowances,” he said.
Malam Modu Habu, a school teacher in Maiduguri, said that most teachers employed in the sector lacked proper qualification.
“Interference by politicians leads to employment of unqualified persons as teachers.
“At present, teachers in most schools in local government areas are not qualified to teach.
“The Federal Government should remove primary education from the jurisdiction of local government councils and place it under the care of either state or Federal Government to guarantee adequate funding,” he said.
Habu also called for the establishment of National Primary Education Commission to address issues related to the welfare of teachers.
Mr Idris Abubakar of the Adamawa State Universal Basic Education Board said the National Primary 1 to JSS 3 education policy was among the best in the world.
He , however , said that the system was not yielding the desired result because of improper implementation and supervision of programmes.
Mr Dauda Maina, the Chairman of NUT in Adamawa , said poor funding of education sector by the councils was a major challenge.
Also, Dijatu Balla, Adamawa Chairman, Private Schools Proprietors Association, said that unless government at all levels gave education the attention it deserved, the challenges would remain.
“There is no problem with the country’s education system, the only challenge is lack of government commitment,” Balla said.